The Columbia River was named for the ship of merchantman/explorer Robert Gray way back in 1792, a time when it ran thick with runs of Chinook, coho, steelhead and sockeye.
These days, with much diminished returns, in some circles the big crick is being renamed Redden’s River, for the U.S. District Court judge in Portland who yesterday once again threw the Feds’ plan to mitigate salmon recovery in the face of hydropower generation back at the agencies for yet another try.
Liz Hamilton of the Northwest Sportfishing Industry Association, who may have coined the Columbia’s new moniker, says the Bonneville Power Administration and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration just took a “major legal thumping.”
Redden told them to come back within two and a half years with a better take.
Here’s a roundup of articles:
Columbia Basin Bulletin: Redden Orders New Salmon BiOp By 2014; Says Post-2013 Mitigation, Benefits Unidentified
The News Tribune (Tacoma): Judge Rejects Protection Plan
And here’s reaction from U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris-Rogers (R-Spokane) as reported by Rich Landers of the Spokesman-Review:
“I am extremely disappointed with Judge Redden’s ruling which threatens to preempt years of hard work by our stakeholders in order to serve a narrow special interest. The BiOp represents a longstanding consensus by experts at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, public utilities, municipalities, and tribes. Contrary to the Judge’s opinion, we’ve seen record fish runs in many parts of the Snake River as a result of the measures put in place at a cost of hundreds of millions of dollars. The fact of the matter is, dam removal should not be an option.”